"This is an incredibly brave book: shocking, and sometimes, despite everything, shockingly hilarious."
–Sara Gruen, best-selling author of Water for Elephants
Danny Ellis is a survivor, strong and resilient. An acclaimed singer/songwriter, he is proud of the way he handled his difficult past: poverty in the 1950s Dublin slums and the brutality of the Artane Industrial School. He felt as though he had safely disposed of it all, until one night, while writing the powerful song that would launch his highly-praised album 800 Voices ("A searing testament." –Irish Times), Danny's past crept back to haunt him. Confronted by forgotten memories of betrayal and abandonment, he was stunned to discover that his eight-year-old self was still trapped in a world he thought he had left behind.
Although unnerved by his experience, Danny begins an arduous journey that leads him back to the streets of Dublin, the tenement slums, and, ultimately, the malice and mischief of the Artane playground. What he discovers with each twist and turn of his odyssey will forever change his life.
Elegantly written, this is a brutally honest, often harrowing, depiction of a young boy's struggle to survive orphanage life. It stands as an inspiring testament to the healing power of music and love.
It is always a pleasure when an author can effectively perform his or her own audiobook. No one knows the material in the memoir The Boy at the Gate better than the Irish musician Danny Ellis, who published this transfixing story of suffering and artistic evolution in 2012. Not only does Ellis perform his own lovely prose in his alluring Dublin accent, but he also sings and plays guitar to give life to the lyrics interspersed throughout the memoir. The autobiography gives the impression of being a long song penned by a sensitive and resilient artist. An orphan who found transcendent expression both though literature and in his album 800 Voices, Ellis is an inspiration.
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Loved it! I've listened to it 3 times
- shana ratcliff